GM Unveils Video of Self-Driving EN-V Vehicle in Action

GM EN-V

We recently took a look at the EN-V, GM's concept road-connected electric vehicle that can theoretically drive itself on city streets. The features are impressive enough—lithium-ion powered electric motors, vehicle-to-vehicle communications, distance-sensing, GPS—but up until now, we only had pictures to satiate our curiosity.

Now GM has released a video of the EN-V, and we have to admit that it looks a bit ridiculous in action. The EN-V also looks unsafe—an accident in this thing would probably be deadly. But isn't it nice to imagine a world where we sit back and relax while our electric pods chauffeur us around on traffic-free streets? Judge the EN-V for yourself below.

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6 Comments

  • Art Kns

    Sorry for the double post. I waited over 3 minutes and thought the first one didn't go through. ;-(

  • Art Kns

    This idea does not look ridiculous to me at all - with a few "minor" changes: eliminate the parking and maybe individual ownership! Create a personal public or private transportation system similar to today's taxis but utilizing these vehicles. The technology is fast approaching for (human) driverless vehicles, especially in a controlled environment. Put a fleet of them out in a city, call for one when you need to go somewhere (your cell phone has your GPS location), the nearest available vehicle picks you up, insert your credit card, enter your destination (keyboard, voice or map display with perhaps a help link to a central dispatcher), and off you go. Door to door with no parking hassles! Between pickups, the vehicles go to charging stations scattered around the city.
    Some vehicles would have to be a bit larger in order to accommodate 2 or 3 passengers plus shopping bags but they all would be much smaller than today's cars.

    At a minimum create dedicated traffic ways. Better, eliminate all full sized automobiles in city centers. At least ban all street parking. Just converting all the street parking lanes would make this feasible. Drive your car from the suburbs to a transfer station, park and take one of these vehicles to your inner city destination. The concept of street-available, rent-by-the-hour cars is already a viable business in Los Angeles [http://www.google.com/search?a...].

    For example, look at Amsterdam - they have dedicated lanes for people (sidewalks), bicycles, trolleys, buses and cars. Each with their own signal lights! And they still have lots and lots of inner city trees. [http://maps.google.com/maps?q=... satellite/street view if you have never been there].

    A well thought out (ahh, there's the rub!), (world or country) standard communication and control protocol (probably municipally operated), would create an environment for innovation, creativity, public and private entrepreneurship and a whole new industry. Wide adoption would lead to cleaner air, fewer accidents, less CO2, healthier populace, etc. (Fewer bank robberies as well - imagine calling for a get-away ride! LOL)

    A wireless Personal Electric Rapid Transit System (PERTS), communication and control infrastructure could also synergistically co-exist with a municipal wireless internet system by using the same towers.

  • Graggone Graggster

    I can't believe GM wasted money on this terd. Just get a golf cart. Oh and to all the eco-nuts, this is no where near emission free. Electricity is generated at power plants, which are mostly coal fired, that blow carbon emissions into the air. You need this electricity to power this terd.

  • Luke Bradley

    This vehicle only looks unsafe if you imagine it with a bunch of other modern cars. But the really ridiculous idea is using cars in an urban environment at all, its just insane: The average human body takes up about 2 square feet of area. The average car takes up about 270 square feet of area. Using a 3,000 lb 270 square ft' container to move around 2 square ft (160 lbs) of cargo in an incredibly crowded area is retarded from any engineering perspective, yet that's what is happening with every crowded city street. The sooner cities move on the better.

  • Philippe Holthuizen

    Doesn't look ridiculous or unsafe to me. More like a fantastic evolution of the car. Want! On a side note, aren't reporters supposed to be impartial?